Game 1’s 27-hour rain delay threw a hitch into the Yankees’ and Tigers’ rotation plans for the ALDS.
On Sunday morning, we got a bit of clarity.
According to beat writer Marc Carig of the Newark Star-Ledger, Yankees manager Joe Girardi revealed in his pre-game press conference Sunday that staff ace CC Sabathia will indeed start Game 3 and A.J. Burnett will take the mound in a potential Game 4.
Ivan Nova will return for Game 5, if needed.
Sabathia pitched two innings of Game 1 Friday before the rain began pouring at Yankee Stadium, allowing one earned run but fanning four batters without issuing a walk. He had a 3.00 regular-season ERA.
Burnett posted a 5.15 ERA and 1.43 WHIP across 190 1/3 innings during the regular season. He has a 5.67 career ERA in the playoffs and allowed five earned runs over six innings in last year’s ALCS vs. the Rangers.
Padres’ outfielder Alex Dickerson won’t see PETCO Park anytime soon — at least, not as its starting left fielder. The 27-year-old was diagnosed with a bulging disc in his lower back prior to the start of the 2017 season, and hasn’t made any kind of substantial progress in the months since. According to Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune, he suffered a setback in his recovery process last week and is set to undergo a season-ending discectomy next Wednesday.
Over 285 plate appearances, Dickerson batted .257/.333/.455 with 10 home runs and a .788 OPS for the Padres in 2016. He missed several days with a right hip contusion last July, but hasn’t experienced any substantial health problems since undergoing surgery in 2014 to repair a torn ligament in his left ankle.
The expected recovery period for lower back surgery is 3-4 months, according to Lin, which puts Dickerson’s estimated return just a few days before the end of the regular season. The Padres aren’t scraping the bottom of the NL West, but their 29-44 record doesn’t bode well for a postseason run this year. Assuming Dickerson rehabs his back in a timely manner, he should be in fine form to enter the competition for left field next spring.
Hanley Ramirez played a pivotal role during the Red Sox’ 9-4 win over the Angels on Friday night, crushing a two-run homer off of Alex Meyer to bring the Sox up to a four-run lead in the fourth inning.
Well, crushed might be the wrong word. The ball cleared the right field fence with a mere 350 feet, landing just beyond Pesky’s Pole to bring Ramirez’s career home run total to an even 250.
According to the ESPN Home Run Tracker, Ramirez’s milestone blast wasn’t the shortest home run of the year — not by a long shot. That distinction currently belongs to Rays’ outfielder Corey Dickerson, who skimmed the left field fence at Rogers Centre with a 326-foot homer back in April.